Regional

New Samoa Minister of Health ready for challenge

APIA, 26 APRIL 2019 (SAMOA OBSERVER) – The woman Samoan Prime Minister Tuilaepa Sa’ilele Malielegaoi has entrusted with the health of the nation remains positive, believing nothing is impossible. The new Minister of Health, Faimalotoa...

PNG Supreme Court ordered local level government elections deferred

PORT MORESBY, 26 APRIL 2019 (POST COURIER) – The Papua New Guinea Supreme Court has ordered an interim injunction, preventing the issuing of writs for the local level government elections. Electoral Commissioner Patilias Gamato had issued instructions immediately to stop accepting nominations pending the court ruling. The nomination period was to open at 4pm Thursday...

New Caledonia candidates list all approved

NOUMEA, 26 APRIL 2019 (RNZ PACIFIC) – The French High Commission in Noumea has approved all 25 lists of candidates submitted for New Caledonia’s provincial elections on 12th May. Most were filed for the southern province where 11 different parties, with eight lists for the Loyalty Islands province and six for the northern province. In...

PNG PM to highlight challenges at Beijing forum

BEIJING, 26 APRIL 2019 (POST COURIER) – Papua New Guinea Prime Minister Peter O’Neill will meet Chinese President Xi Jinping today, together with other world leaders when he makes his address at the last day of the One Belt One Road Global Forum to speak on vital issues pertaining to the Pacific and PNG. O’Neill,...

Taiwan happy to see Sogavare victory in Solomon Islands PM election

TAIPEI, 26 APRIL 2019 (CNA) – Taiwan is glad to see veteran Solomon Islands politician Manasseh Sogavare winning Wednesday’s prime minister election, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) said Thursday, saying that having “an old friend of Taiwan” serving in the post will solidify ties with the Pacific ally. Following an inconclusive April 3 election...

Samoa conference inspires action on boosting small states’ resilience to disasters

APIA, 25 APRIL 2019 (COMSEC) – Samoa faced huge flooding in 2018 after torrential rain fell overnight, leaving a trail of destruction, 330 people evacuated and US$10 million of infrastructural damage. The lessons learned from this experience made Samoa a suitable location to host the fifth Commonwealth Global Biennial Conference on Small States under the...

Pohnpei hosts symposium on technology for tuna transparency

POHNPEI, 25 APRIL 2019 (FSMIS) – In response to Peter M. Christian, president of the Federated States of Micronesia, calling for complete transparency in FSM’s commercial tuna fisheries by 2023, from April 10 to 12, the Technology for Tuna Transparency or T-3 Challenge Electronic Monitoring (EM) Symposium was held in Pohnpei State. Sponsored by the...

25th April

Air Vanuatu gets Vt380 million loan from government

PORT VILA, 25 APRIL 2019 (VANUATU DAILY POST) – Vanuatu Minister of Finance and Economic Management, Gaetan Pikioune, and the Chairman of the Air Vanuatu Board, Joel Lengsau, have signed an agreement for a Vt380 million (US$3.3 million) loan. The loan is the second down payment towards the assembling of four Airbus aircrafts for Vanuatu....

Three dengue cases on Aitutaki

RAROTONGA, 25 APRIL 2019 (COOK ISLANDS NEWS) – Another outbreak of dengue fever has not been ruled out by the Cook Islands Ministry for Health. The admission comes as three probable dengue DENV-1 virus cases have been identified on Aitutaki. The ministry has confirmed that it has sent two health protection officers and a vector...

Samoa Prime Minister announced reshuffle of Cabinet portfolios

APIA, 25 APRIL 2019 (SAMOA GOVT) – Samoa Prime Minister Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi has announced the reshuffling of Cabinet portfolio responsibilities. In effecting this reshuffle the Prime Minister meticulously took into consideration the importance of maintaining a balance of Cabinet Ministers’ duties and responsibilities to ensure that they are not overloaded with multiple portfolio responsibilities....

PM Sogavare defends leadership style

HONIARA, 25 APRIL 2019 (ISLAND SUN) – Solomon Islands Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare has described his ‘leadership style’ which former politicians have used to remove him through motion of no confidence in the past as nonsense. Speaking to media in his first press conference in Parliament Wednesday, Sogavare said the mover of past motion of...

NZ High Commission’s new chancery building opens in Niue

ALOFI, 25 APRIL 2019 (RNZ PACIFIC) – New Zealand’s parliamentary under-secretary for Foreign Affairs, Fletcher Tabuteau, has opened the new chancery of the New Zealand High Commission in Niue. The new building replaces one built about 70 years ago. Tabuteau said both countries were bound together in a special and enduring relationship. “Its many strands...

Sogavare sworn-in as new PM, ministers to be named at end of week

HONIARA, 25 APRIL 2019 (ISLAND SUN) – Manasseh Sogavare has been sworn-in as Solomon Islands new Prime Minister by the Governor General Sir Frank Kabui at Government House immediately after his election by Members of Parliament Wednesday. Sogavare was voted into office at Parliament House, polling 34 votes over his rival Matthew Wale in the...

Tonga’s commitment to gender equality highlighted by launch of first gender statistics publication

NUKU’ALOFA, 25 APRIL 2019 (SPC) – To mark International Women’s Day, Tonga launched its first gender statistics publication titled ‘Gender Equality: Where do we stand?’. The Ministry of Internal Affairs, Women’s Affairs Division spearheaded the compilation of the publication with the support from key Ministries, key stakeholders and the Pacific Community (SPC) -Social Development Programme....

PNG Sovereign Wealth Fund plan derailed by falling oil prices

PORT MORESBY, 25 APRIL 2019 (THE NATIONAL) – Papua New Guinea deputy Prime Minister and Treasurer Charles Abel said the collapse of world crude oil prices derailed the Sovereign Wealth Fund (SWF) plan. “Part of the reason (for not setting up the SWF) is that we never got much revenue. We were short of revenue....

Man storms into Tongan church in Auckland and starts yelling

AUCKLAND, 25 APRIL 2019 (NZ HERALD) – A North Shore couple were scared and shocked when a man stormed into their church and began yelling “Jesus Jesus” and pointing at a cross during a religious service. North Shore couple Jenny and Samuel Kaufononga were at Free Wesleyan Church of Tonga in Mt Roskill along with...

PNG chief secretary to government hails first Pacific heads of public service meet

PORT MORESBY, 25 APRIL 2019 (POST COURIER) – Papua New Guinea Chief Secretary to Government Isaac Lupari co-hosted the inaugural meeting of Pacific Heads of Public Service with his Australian counterpart, Secretary for Prime Minister and Cabinet, Dr Martin Parkinson, in Brisbane on April 15. The meeting, which brought together public service leaders from Papua...

25 lists to contest New Caledonia provincial election

NOUMEA, 25 APRIL 2019 (RNZ PACIFIC) – A total of 25 lists of candidates have been submitted to contest New Caledonia’s provincial elections on 12 May. Most were filed for the southern province where 11 different parties will run. The lists are now being vetted by the French High Commission and should be made official...

Nauru denies former president’s claim offshore detention deal led to corruption

YAREN, 25 APRIL 2019 (THE GUARDIAN) – The government of Nauru has branded claims by its former president that the country’s offshore detention deal with Australia had led to corruption and greed on the island “pure fiction”. Sprent Dabwido, who was president of Nauru from 2011 to 2013, recently gave an interview in Australia, where...

Solomon Islands Police arrest suspects after violence in Honiara

HONIARA, 25 APRIL 2019 (SOLOMON STAR) – Solomon Islands Police have so far arrested more than 30 suspects for offences involved in disturbances in Honiara after the election of the Prime Minister on Wednesday. Police say certain members of the public decided to take the law into their own hands and marched through some streets...

PM Sogavare denies ‘failing Malaita’, Australia congratulates Sogavare

HONIARA, 25 APRIL 2019 (SOLOMON STAR/SBS) – Solomon Islands elected Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare has hit out at accusations his past governments have failed Malaita in terms of project implementation. He was speaking during his first press conference following his election, Wednesday. He said the proposed Bina Habour project for example has been around and...

Why we walked out, Wale clarifies PM election decision

HONIARA, 25 APRIL 2019 (SOLOMON STAR) – Mathew Wale says his group walked out from the Solomon Islands prime minister’s election Wednesday for the “sake of the rule of law”. He said they made the decision after Governor General Sir Frank Kabui refused to accept a High Court order to postpone the election. Wale’s rival...

New Zealand PM says no intelligence linking Sri Lanka attacks to Christchurch

WELLINGTON (Reuters) – New Zealand’s Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said on Wednesday that her government was not aware of any intelligence suggesting that a devastating attack on Easter Sunday in Sri Lanka was in retaliation for deadly shootings on a mosques in Christchurch. Sri Lanka’s junior minister for defence, Ruwan Wijewardene, told parliament on Tuesday...

23rd April

Former Fiji national to be sentenced for swindling Ports of Auckland

A FORMER Fiji national will be sentenced later this year by the Auckland District Court having been found guilty by a jury of 50 charges of dishonestly using a document. Litia Vuniduvu was caught alongside her lover, former senior Ports of Auckland manager-turned fraudster Paul Wayne Bainbridge, for swindling the Auckland Council-owned company out of...

22nd April

Water shortages could affect 5bn people by 2050, UN report warns

LONDON, 22 APRIL 2019 (THE GUARDIAN) – More than 5 billion people could suffer water shortages by 2050 due to climate change, increased demand and polluted supplies, according to a UN report on the state of the world’s water. The comprehensive annual study warns of conflict and civilisational threats unless actions are taken to reduce...

Fiji Government continues efforts to reduce fruit imports

SUVA, 22 APRIL 2019 (FIJI GOVT) – Reducing the trade deficit through the importation of fruits and vegetables remains a key priority of the Fijian Government through the Ministry of Agriculture. This was highlighted by the Ministry’s Deputy Secretary for Agriculture Development, Jone Sovalawa at the launch of Fiji’s Fruit Tree Orchards initiative at Volivoli...

Online debates monitored in Solomon Islands

HONIARA, 22 APRIL 2019 (SOLOMON STAR) – The Royal Solomon Islands Police Force (RSIPF) is monitoring online forums for any unlawful conduct as the country prepares to elect a new Prime Minister on Wednesday. Police Commissioner Matthew Varley made the warning following security concerns about posts on social media inciting protests. “RSIPF monitors social media...

Chinese company to build new Vanuatu finance ministry

PORT VILA, 22 APRIL 2019 (RNZ PACIFIC) – A Chinese company has won the tender to build Vanuatu’s new Ministry of Finance. The Chinese Civil Engineering Construction Company will build the ministry on the site of the The Condominium Building which will be demolished. From 1906 to 1979, the building complex had been used by...

Queen celebrates 93rd birthday at Easter service

LONDON (Reuters) – Britain’s Queen Elizabeth, the world’s oldest and longest reigning living monarch, celebrated her 93rd birthday on Sunday by attending the traditional Easter service at Windsor Castle. Elizabeth was accompanied by members of her family, including grandsons Prince William and Prince Harry, and William’s wife Catherine, at the Easter Mattins service in St...

China to show new warships as Beijing flexes military muscle on navy anniversary

BEIJING, 22 APRIL 2019 (REUTERS) – China will show off new warships including nuclear submarines and destroyers at a parade next week marking 70 years since its navy’s founding, a senior commander said on Saturday, as Beijing flexes its increasingly well-equipped military muscle. President Xi Jinping is overseeing a sweeping plan to refurbish the People’s...

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